Catholic World News News Feature
Iowa bishop's resignation follows bankruptcy filing October 12, 2006
Bishop William Franklin of Davenport, Iowa, has resigned just two days after his diocese declared bankruptcy.
Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop Martin Amos, a Cleveland auxiliary, to head the Davenport diocese. Bishop Franklin's retirement had been overdue, since he had reached his 75th birthday-- the canonical age for submitting a letter of retirement-- in May 2005.
On October 10, the Davenport diocese had become the 4th in the US to file for bankruptcy protection, citing over $10 million in payments to victims of sexual abuse, with new lawsuits still pending. Potentially the most damaging suits cited alleged abuse by Bishop Lawrence Soens, the former head of the Sioux City, Iowa diocese. The lawsuits charge that Soens molested boys in the 1960s when he was serving as a parish priest and high-school principal in the Davenport diocese.